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A Distinct And Dynamic Entry In The Superpowered Action Thri
Stephen B. O'Blenis | Nova Scotia, Canada | 06/29/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In the world of Push, paranormal individuals exist with various powers - clairvoyance, telekinesis, etc. - who are sought by national governments and other organizations, all for their own purposes. Sound familiar? In a way it is, but it would in that case fall into that class of movies that takes an idea that's done all the time, but then just does it noticeably better than most of its peers. But Push has been made different by a very distinctive style and an edgier, slightly darker vibe. The lines between good and evil among the governments, criminal empires, etc. that are pursuing the superpowered fugitives around the world - and have been for decades - are blurred and it appears there really are no 'good guys' among the big organized players. Instead the heroes of the movie are the fugitives, who just want to avoid being captured and used. The edgier vibe comes into play here - although the powered beings are generally the 'good guys', they often live on the wrong side of the law (by necessity), often have shady connections, and most of them won't hesitate to use lethal force against their pursuers.
One of the main objectives of the government agency known as Division (with Djimon Hounsou turning in another terrific performance as one of their top agents) over the years, aside from hunting down the 'movers' (telekinetics), 'watchers' (clairvoyants), 'pushers' (can 'push' their thoughts into others' minds and influence their behavior), 'screamers' (dangerous 'shockwave' type screams) and all the other paranormals, has been finding a safe means of enhancing the powers of these individuals. Over the years, numerous drugs have been devised that can temporarily raise power levels enormously, but it always manifests fatal side effects shortly thereafter. The apparant success of the use of a new drug on a captive pusher named Kira (Camilla Belle from When a Stranger Calls) is the catalyst for the events of the movie. Kira escapes Division's custody, aided by the use of her rapidly increasing mental powers, and ends up in Hong Kong, allied with a mover, Nick (Chris Evans) who's been on the run since he saw his mover father killed by Division agents when he was eight, and a young clairvoyant named Cassie (Dakota Fanning). Alliances switch and turn as competing organizations seek Kira and the drug that enhanced her, and powered individuals get dragged into the fray on various sides. It also comes in that not everyone's intentions may be what they initially seem, and in some cases the viewer is left to decide on their own who to root for rather than being told "here's the bad guys, and here's the good guys".
Push balances a complex and smart storyline with mystery/suspense angles on one side and dynamic action on the other. The characterizations are strong, the production values great, and the unusual pounding electronic score helps Push to create a unique atmosphere. Intriguing, sexy, and with fast-paced plot twists that call for the viewer to pay close attention, this is a definate winner in the superpowered action/adventure field, with TONNES of potential for a sequel to boot. 9/10"